The finale of Breaking Bad is tonight. Here’s what’s going to happen!
Vince Gilligan, the screenwriter behind the show, gave a clue on Talking Bad with the title of the episode: “Felina”.* He remarked that some people noted that this was an anagram of finale. That’s a dodge.
Out in the West Texas town of El Paso (close enough) I fell in love with a Mexican girl. (Skyler … close enough) Night-time would find me in Rosa's cantina; Music would play and Felina would whirl.
(Or is the White’s home Rosa’s, and Felina is money?)
Blacker than night were the eyes of Felina, Wicked and evil while casting a spell. My love was deep for this Mexican maiden; I was in love but in vain, I could tell.
One night a wild young cowboy came in, (Tuco? Gus?) Wild as the West Texas wind. Dashing and daring, A drink he was sharing With wicked Felina, The girl that I loved.
So in anger I
Challenged his right for the love of this maiden. Down went his hand for the gun that he wore. My challenge was answered in less than a heart-beat; The handsome young stranger lay dead on the floor.
Just for a moment I stood there in silence, Shocked by the FOUL EVIL [sic] deed I had done. Many thoughts raced through my mind as I stood there; I had but one chance and that was to run.
Out through the back door of Rosa's I ran, Out where the horses were tied. I caught a good one. It looked like it could run. Up on its back And away I did ride,
Just as fast as I
Could from the West Texas town of El Paso Out to the bad-lands of New Mexico. (tothe cook site?)
Back in El Paso my life would be worthless. Everything's gone in life; nothing is left. It's been so long since I've seen the young maiden My love is stronger than my fear of death.
(In Albaquerque, Walt’s life was worthless, so he fled to New Hampshire. But now he has no life. His love for his family/money is strong, so he returns).
I saddled up and away I did go, Riding alone in the dark. Maybe tomorrow A bullet may find me. Tonight nothing's worse than this Pain in my heart.
And at last here I
Am on the hill overlooking El Paso; I can see Rosa's cantina below. My love is strong and it pushes me onward. Down off the hill to Felina I go.
Off to my right I see five mounted cowboys; (the nazis) Off to my left ride a dozen or more. (the DEA) Shouting and shooting I can't let them catch me. I have to make it to Rosa's back door.
Something is dreadfully wrong for I feel A deep burning pain in my side. Though I am trying To stay in the saddle, I'm getting weary, Unable to ride.
(I’ll bet you a buck Walt gets wounded)
But my love for
Felina is strong and I rise where I've fallen, Though I am weary I can't stop to rest. I see the white puff of smoke from the rifle. I feel the bullet go deep in my chest.
(The second bullet’s drop Walt for good. White puffs of dust/smoke in the distance have repeatedly been used in scenes set at the cook site on the reservation).
From out of nowhere Felina has found me, Kissing my cheek as she kneels by my side. Cradled by two loving arms that I'll die for, One little kiss and Felina, good-bye.
(Either Skyler will find the wounded Walt, and he’ll die in her arms, or Walt will die clutching his money or some meth)
I’m sure many other people caught this reference. For my part, all I can say is that I recognized it right away, and know the lyrics to the song pretty damn well, so the lightbulbs went off like crazy for me.
* He also gave the clue “woodworking”. I have no clue what this means, but if I had to hazard a guess I’d say that they were going to maim Jesse with woodworking tools.
I thoroughly enjoyed “My Life as a Warrior” by Jennifer Sky in the September 10 issue of The New York Times.
Ms. Sky was recruited into modeling as a teenager, and found it soul-shattering. She turned to acting, got a part on Xena: Warrior Princess, and blossomed.
… Still recovering from an adolescence of exploitation at the hands of the fashion industry, it was shout-it-to-the-heavens inspiring. … I crushed so hard on Xena that I wrote Lucy Lawless, the actress who played her, a fan letter — and I worked on the show. [emphasis added]
Heartwarming, and highly recommended (and I’m not a fanboy: I probably saw Xena for a grand total of 30 seconds).
Being a lifelong fan of Star Wars, I grew up with science fiction being firmly rooted in action and spectacle. What little I'd seen of Star Trek seemed boring … having watched the original series, I find myself in the unfortunate spot of having to admit I was wrong.
I was honestly not expecting much from it.
I’m excerpting heavily to make the point below:
… Star Trek can be slow and often falls on the side of the odd. …
That said, the show generally does well at turning its frequent absurdity into something watchable and often intriguing. …
… The show uses quality writing to overcome its sometimes zany premises.
There are countless episodes like this one where I was skeptical going in but wound up utterly committed to the story by its ends. It's one of the most skillful uses of episodic storytelling I've ever seen in a show …
… Without fancy and expensive effects to fall back on, Star Trek instead had to rely on its writing and the strength of its actors' performances. …
… There is, simply put, a sincerity and genuineness to Star Trek that is infectious. It's intelligent but lacks cynicism. It gives grandiose speeches but also has quiet moments of personal revelation that stick with you. It's a science fiction show, but one built on a foundation of likable characters and human drama. …
My impression of this is that if I deleted all the references to Star Trek, you might think that this guy has gone in skeptical, and come out a believer, after going to a week of performances at one of the better Shakespeare companies.
I had a question about a Buddy Holly song, so off I went to Wikipedia.
It’s in the nature of surfing that you read stuff you weren’t looking for, and I read this:
In 1949, still retaining his soprano, he recorded a bluesy solo rendering of Hank Snow's "My Two Timin' Woman" on a wire recorder borrowed by a friend who worked in a music shop.
Then I wanted to know what a wire recorder was. It turns out that the technology holding back tape recording wasn’t recording but developing the tape itself. But, in the late 40’s and early 50’s, recording on metal wire was the way to go.
But this is what caught my eye:
Though fictional, the Allied officers of Hogan's Heroes used a wire recorder to record a meeting in Kommandant Klink's office on a device that was disguised as a sewing box made of wooden thread spools.
I can remember watching that episode in repeats almost 40 years ago. And the thing is I can remember being struck by the weirdness of them recording on wire: to a kid in the 1970’s, tape was all there had ever been.
Within that I searched for the word “mother”, which yielded a YouTube link to the singer: 劉鳳屏.
And when you get there, you find a song from about 40 years ago from Hong Kong. Posted in 2008, with 11 comments, 7 of them from this week, and one from the person who gave the title on YouTube. In those comments are the strings given above: apparently someone misspelled something. Perhaps the artist’s name: she seems to have also gone by Pancy Lau and Lau Fung Ping.
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